Nerys Ghemor wrote:
Yet you so perfectly illustrate my point as to why they need to be outside the Federation as a strong competitor [...]
What does "conservative" mean in the 24th century, then? What does it translate to?
Fiscal responsibility? Economic libertarianism? Utilizing the fleet in its traditional role as a primarily military arm? We should speak in concrete terms here. Does it simply mean "unwilling to integrate and give up sovereignty"? If that's the case, then I can see your point--but for what it's worth I see the Ferengi as potentially filling that role more nicely than the Cardassians, as they are, more than anyone, the "anti-Federation," an amoral alliance of libertarians set against the self-righteous communards of Earth and Vulcan. And they do not have the baggage of war guilt and the intense self-examination.
They need only be written as competent and efficient... which I'll grant is apparently beyond any Trek writer to date, that I know of.
Now I'm not saying the Cardassians need to be humans with scales. That would be dull. But despite the received wisdom, I personally believe that Federation allies and members can
be at least as interesting as any adversary.
You seem to assume that the only people whose views are worth having are those who adhere to the exact set of liberal/relativistic values that the Federation have
Not really. Of all the factions in the Star Trek universe, the ones that most closely approximate my own values might actually be the Borg.
I find the Federation often hypocritical and parochial... and yet for a society of humanoids, I fear there is no better alternative, just like the real world state for which the Federation is an avatar.
Thor Damar wrote:
I'm very glad to see Cardassia recovering from the Dominion Genocide and I personally think that its great that there is no Klingon or Romulan occupation. Besides isn't the KDF supposed to be recovering from the Dominion War? Those Klingons shouldn't be trying to expand their poxy empire for gods sake
And what better way to recover than to loot the corpse of the Cardassian Union?
Simply from a realpolitik perspective, I'd presume the Klingons and Romulans, who have lost millions of lives on account of the Cardassians, would demand, perhaps even rightfully, tremendous concessions from the prostrated Union, likely in the terms of territory.
I doubt they were much swayed by Damar's rebellion--any more than the Allies were by von Tresckow's attempted coup (and I just realized that Valkyrie
already came out three months ago, I thought it was slated for a summer 2009 release
). After all, Damar only got serious about fighting the Dominion... once he started losing.
Indeed, the question really isn't whether the Klings and Roms wanted
to annex large portions of the Cardassian Union, but who was there to stop them? The Cards? No. The Feds? Yeah, I bet they stopped them with as much vigor as we stopped the Soviets from occupying Berlin.
The alternative to a lack of Federation occupation is occupation by the Klingons and Romulans.
From the perspective of the Federation itself, the Cardassians have been a thorn in the side of the Federation for years. These wars were apparently so damaging that the Feds even gave up territory in the form of a "DMZ" which the Cardassians did not respect. And then they served as the power base of the Dominion in the Alpha Quadrant--there was no way they were going to allow the Cardassians to regain their footing on such terms that they would again become a threat. And practically, the Cardassian society and economy was so devastated by the war that they were likely incapable of functioning on their own.
Now, that doesn't mean I think Federation occupation would be brutal or even undemocratic--I think it would be similar to the situation in West Germany, after our war. The Klingons would be permitted to reap some benefits from conquest but eventually would be obliged to leave--by the Federation--once (after maybe a decade
) the Feds considered the Cards ready for sovereignty again. The Romulans, like the USSR, would refuse to give up their gains, and Cardassia would be split into two parts for the long term.
Unfortuantely, the situation we actually have is the Romulan state being split in two for the long term, and the Federation is utterly without enemies, except the bloody Borg or a combination of minor players like this newfangled Typhon Pact is meant to be.